ERIC Number: ED342449
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1992
The Freshman Experience and the Role of Student Assistants.
Santa Rita, Emilio
The Student Assistants' Program (SAP) was implemented at Bronx Community College (BCC) (New York) to reduce attrition between admission and the first day of classes. The principal objective of the program is to train presently enrolled students to provide individual assistance to entering freshmen. These student assistants help new students with registration and orientation through small-group meetings. To evaluate the SAP, students attending orientation sessions in 1990 (N=770) and 1991 (N=1,440) were surveyed about the quality of the orientation and its relevance to their needs. In addition, student assistants were surveyed about their impressions of the orientation meeting, training session, and their performance as orientation leaders; 80% of the student assistants responded. Finally, a questionnaire was sent to all 300 new students who did not complete the fall registration process. Major study findings included the following: (1) on a six-point scale, the overall quality of the orientation meeting was given a 4.75 rating, while the preparation and organization of the student assistant received a 5.18 rating; (2) student assistants gave the highest ratings to the overall quality of the SAP (4.77) and the appropriateness of resources received (4.68) and the lowest ratings to the value of the filmstrip (4.22) and the value of the program to students (4.43); (3) new students who attended the orientation meetings had a no-show rate of 2.3%, while those who did not attend the meeting had a no-show rate of 27.4%; and (4) of students who applied to but did not register at BCC, 41% indicated that they would be attending another school and 32% cited financial reasons for not attending college at this time. This and previous studies confirmed that successful new student orientation programs incorporate personal concern for individual students and small group settings ease students' transition into college. (JMC)
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Bronx Community Coll., NY.